JIS News

Seventeen year-old, first year student at the Montego Bay Community College, Jodi-Anne Redway is the new Junior Mayor of Montego Bay.
The pre-university student was bestowed with the coveted position on Wednesday (Nov. 22), at the Montego Bay Civic Centre, after immerging with the most points in the recently concluded Montego Bay Junior Mayor competition.
The Montego Bay Junior Mayor competition forms part of the Local Government Month activities of the St. James Parish Council. November is observed as Local Government month.
Jodi-Anne emerged from a field of twelve of her teen aged peers who were drawn from seven high schools, and the Montego Bay Community College within the parish of St. James. The participants each had to make a ten-minute presentation on a selected topic before an audience, which included three selected judges.
Based on their presentation, each student could harness a maximum of 105 points from the judges, and Jodi-Anne earned the most points, gaining 90 of the possible 105 points to be named the Junior Mayor of Montego Bay for 2006. Shenika Gray of Cambridge High School gained 86 points and was named Deputy Junior Mayor.
In her presentation, the new Junior Mayor spoke on the topic: ‘The duties of Leaders’, in which she called for a lobbying for equal opportunities for all, and people empowerment. She said that these were necessary for Montego Bay as a municipality, and the parish of St. James as a whole, for full development.
Pointing out that the local government representatives were key in achieving these targets, she said that creative ways had to be employed to mobilize people participation in the governance process, while at the same time ensuring that the necessary infrastructure and services were in place.
Jodi-Anne expressed the view that the Parish Councillors should be that all important link between the man in the street, and the Local Government administrators.
“I expect each of them (the Councillors) not to forget that a Councillor is a leader, taking action which will shape the future of the society. To do this the Councillors must be familiar not only with constituency problems but also with the bigger national picture and the complete Jamaican jurisprudence,” she stated.
The student said that the Councillors should consider it their moral duty to give priority to the concerns and wishes of the electorate, always facilitating the cycle of information exchange.
Guest speaker at the ceremony, Director for the National Centre for Youth Development, Ohene Blake, speaking on the topic; ‘Molding tomorrow’s leaders today’, stated that leadership did not begin at adulthood, as both young and old were today’s leaders. He said that for Jamaica to move into first world status then the quality of leadership within homes, churches, businesses, the political system, and schools must be improved.

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